— Update 30 August 2023 – original post below —
Team Würth TRD Hilux MSB Tras 135 has successfully completed the 2023 Asia Cross Country Rally (AXCR). The Toyota Hilux, piloted by Mr. Masanao Nitta and his co-driver, Mr. Satanako, and clad in a unique natural fibre composite bodywork, crossed the finish line in Laos in 10th place overall. This even meant that they occupied the impressive 9th rank of the T1D class at the end of the race.
The second Toyota Hilux with a Bcomp natural fibre bodywork and sporting the number 131 came into 18th place overall, consolidating the successful participation at this year’s rally. Both teams were very happy to arrive safely and conclude a very successful participation to the 2023 AXCR.
The natural fibre bodywork of both cars held up incredibly well and managed to withstand the challenging and rough conditions during the tough racing where human and machine were pushed to the limits.
After the race, driver & Tras CEO Masanao Nitta commented: “It was an extremely hard-fought race to get into the top ten of the AXCR. But we did it! The more sustainable natural fibre parts go well together with the beautiful natural environment of a cross country rally. The increased damping properties of the material ensured minimal damage to vehicle and environment during the many impacts in the rough terrain and on narrow paths between trees and rocks.”
— original post —
The 2023 edition of the Asia Cross Country Rally (AXCR) is just around the corner and we are happy to be involved again with our dear friends from Tras Ltd. Team Würth TRD Hilux MSB Tras 135 is competing again after their successful participation last year which saw them as the sole team running a natural fibre composite bodywork. This engagement earned the team a Special Award which rewards the effort to reduce CO2 emissions in the vehicle production process, while keeping the performance and joy of motorsports in mind.
The 28th Asia Cross Country Rally will be held in Thailand and Laos between 13 – 19 August 2023. The team will be led by Mr. Masanao Nitta (60) and his co-driver, Mr. Satonaka (26). Mr. Nitta is the founder and CEO of the Japanese Advanced Composite Materials Specialist company Tras Ltd. and is an experienced driver. His skill is sought after in the automotive industry and in the MotoGP. For the AXCR, Tras developed a unique natural fibre composite body for the Toyota Hilux.
Flax Fibre Composites Provided by Bcomp
Bcomp Ltd. supports the Würth TRD Hilux MSB Tras 135 team as a materials sponsor. The team already successfully completed the AXCR rally in the T1 class for modified cross-country cars in 2022 and even won a Special Award for the use of sustainable natural fibre materials. By replacing the original parts with flax-based ampliTex™ and powerRibs™ solutions by Bcomp Ltd., the potential CO2 reduction from cradle to gate is up to 85% compared to parts made purely of carbon.